CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- Citadel Cadets participate in a hunger strike after certain incidents in their dining hall.
One of the cadets that participated in the strike explains what prompted the group to protest; rats, hair in food, murky water from the drinking fountain, and more.
In a specific event he recalls eating with a classmate who found a hair in their french fries.
According to him; finding rats in the dining hall was the final straw for some of the cadets. That’s when the hunger strike was brought up on social media.
They were hoping it would catch the attention of their officials.
“It’s not just the rats,” he says. “The rats were just the breaking point, I guess. We’re paying a lot of money to go to that place and everybody is just fed up.”
Citadel officials commented on the strike and claim that they are working hard to correct issues dealing with kitchen hygiene and structural problems to prevent pests from getting into the building.
VP of Marketing and Communications, Colonel John Dorrian, says these issues will not be shoved under the rug.
“Periodically there are problems in the mess hall when we’re serving 6,500 meals a day in there,” says Dorrian. “We’re not just going to admire the problem. We’re going to solve it. We’re the Citadel, that’s what we do.”
The students who participated in the hunger strike will not recieve any disciplinary action. In fact, Dorrian says that the school prides itself on patriotism and allowing their students to exercise protest.
“We’re not going to take away somebody’s ability to protest if they have a problem. But if somebody doesn’t want to eat, they want to express displeasure by all means they should do that if they find the conditions to be unacceptable,” says Dorrian.
The cadet says that he thinks that the hunger strike did exactly what it was intended for, and predicts changes will start happening as soon as next week.
Colonel Dorrian claims that steps have already been taken to assure that food coming out of the kitchen is “safe, nutritious, healthy and well-prepared.”